Friday, December 24, 2010
Christmas is here! Its really here!!!
Do you remember when you were a kid and you couldn't wait? It was the best thing in the world. Now as adults, do we look forward to it just as much?
There's been alot of talk about simplifying and downsizing Christmas. Avoiding the consumerism that is rampant out there. I, for one, have tried to simplify for years. Finally, this year we made two decisions that have greatly lessened my stress level. We have chosen not to drive to be with extended family. Even tho we are closer this year since moving to SW WA, we are still 4-6 hours away depending on who we see. And more importantly, we are also at the stage in life where Joe doesn't do well away from his own home overnight. We also decided to not exchange gifts anymore with Michael's side of the family. It had become habit rather than a real joy. That cut my shopping in half, which is loverly!
Other ways in which we have simplified are probably scandalous to some, but work for us. We haven't sent out Christmas cards in years. Tho I enjoy recieving them, during our lean years we just couldn't afford the extra expense. During the same time period, we chose not to have a tree. I do miss having a tree sometimes, but enjoy others trees. Our house is still festive tho, since I still put up lots of decorations around the house. I toned down our baking and cooking as well. This year I've done a bit more baking but not to the same extent as I did years ago. Finding a balance is truly liberating. Finding ways to celebrate without making yourself crazy is life-changing.
Some advocate making gifts instead of buying and if this works for you, that's wonderful. For us, this adds more stress to our lives, so we continue to shop. But our gift budget is not over-the-top.
I'm looking forward to cooking a scrumptious Christmas dinner for the three of us. I'm excited about spending the time with my boys. I love Christmas and I love our family. There is no one else I'd rather be with at this time of year.
So how 'bout you? Have you simplified? What have you found works for you and your family?